The City Of Saint John

Saint JohnSaint John has a population 125,000 and is the largest city in the province of New Brunswick, a 90 minute drive from the US border at Calais, Maine, a two-hour flight from Toronto and a 75 minute flight from Montreal. Did you know? Saint John is Canada’s first incorporated city and provides a rich cultural heritage and fine examples of historic architecture.

Saint John is situated on Canada’s Atlantic seaboard on the southern coast of New Brunswick.

  • Saint John is the largest city in New Brunswick and the second largest city in Atlantic Canada.
  • The City of Saint John covers 323 sq. km. (201sq. mi.) of land, making it the second largest municipality in Canada.
  • The City’s strategic location provides ready access to major markets in Atlantic Canada, Quebec, Ontario and the northeastern United States.
  • More than 43 million consumers live within a single day’s drive and nearly 100 million reside within two days drive.

Saint John is home to the world-famous Reversing Falls Rapids. In Saint John Harbour, the Bay of Fundy water mingles with the Saint John River and because of the heights of the tides and the geography of the river’s mouth, this is no ordinary river flowing to the sea. Twice daily, the mighty Saint John River is pushed backwards (upstream) by the Fundy tide. This is known as the Reversing Falls Rapids. The reversal of the direction is no small feat considering the length of the River (750km/450miles) and the volume of water forces through the narrow gorge at the Falls (equivalent 24 hour flow of all the worlds rivers). In Saint John, we experience 8.6m / 28 foot tides; this is the difference from low to high tide.

In addition to this amazing natural attraction, the lush river valleys offer beautiful scenery to the degree that the Saint John River has been dubbed the Rhine of North America. The Kingston Peninsula, accessible by free river ferry from Saint John, showcases the Kennebecasis River and the Hampton Marshes. The ferry services dot the landscape of both river systems and provide travelers with easy access to further exploration.

Uptown has numerous museums, galleries and historic sites: the New Brunswick Museum at Market Square (new in 1996); Barbour’s General Store; Loyalist House; Saint John Jewish Historical Museum; and the Saint John Firefighter’s Museum. Each offers its own perspective on the heritage and culture of Saint John. Visit the Old County Courthouse and the newly restored Old Burial Grounds. The Old City Market, oldest of its kind in Canada, is a favourite of locals and visitors. Here you can sample dulse (New Brunswick’s edible seaweed) and peruse vendor’s wares. Stroll through the shops and galleries of nearby Trinity Royal, a heritage preservation area. Guided bus and walking tours are also available.

Saint JohnOne great way to visit Saint John and experience the Fundy Region is through the New Brunswick Day Adventure Program. From Saint John, visitors can take a harbour tour; sea kayak in Fundy’s famous waters; explore the Fundy Isles and visit the summer home of President Roosevelt; whale watch from an historic schooner; or choose a mountain bike tour through the dramatic seascapes of the Fundy Region. All this and more within a ninety minute drive from the city.

Visit the hidden highways and byways of scenic, rural New Brunswick, only a stone’s throw away from the city. This includes the communities of Chance Harbour, Dipper Harbour and Maces Bay; the historic village of St. Martins, once a busy nineteenth-century wooden shipbuilding community and the seaside resort town of St. Andrews-by-the-sea. Not far off is Fundy National Park. Nearby Hopewell Cape is home to the “Flower Pot Rocks”. At low tide you can walk amongst the rocks and feel the immense power of the tide, which carved these stone monoliths; at high tide the space is completely filled with the deep, Fundy waters.

Each March, Saint John celebrates its Irish heritage with a week-long festival culminating on St. Patrick’s Day. Three of the larger summer festivals are Franco Frolic in June, Heritage Celebration in July and the Festival by the Sea in August (a national performing arts festival, which transforms the waterfront into a large open-air amphitheater.